Today’s Scrip-Bit 22 August 2017 Matthew 9:29b.

Matthew 9:29b.   According to you faith be it unto you.

Well friends, it’s  Tuesday. Were any of you lucky enough to see the mercurial eclipse yesterday? I wasn’t. But it seems like the most powerful man in the world thought he was powerful enough to view it without the special glasses recommended. (smile) 

But that’s what he’s all about ego and power. Enough of the tongue in cheek stuff though. Here is something to help us face the day successfully, from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional, titled, ‘A Prayer for Solutions.’ 

Please pray with me. ‘Lord, thanks for assuring me that you’ll solve the problems if I’ll exercise the faith and make the right decision! Forgive me for waiting for all difficulties, real or fanciful, to be resolved before deciding to make my commitment. 

I confess I have too often allowed problems instead of possibilities to take over leadership of my life – to make my decisions – and take command over my destiny. I know, now, what faith is, Lord! It’s making the right decisions before I see solutions to all problems! Increase my faith! Amen.’ 

Now have we been guilty of that kind of thing? I’m sure all of us have at some time or another. And what’s the first right decision we’re always supposed to make? Turning to God with the problem! 

Yeh friends, whether the problem be big or small, hard or simple, the Lord God Almighty IS ALWAYS THE FIRST ONE we should talk to about it, for He is the Master Problem Solver. Have the faith to let Him direct our steps. 

And what did Jesus say unto the two blind men who wanted him to heal them. ‘Believe ye that I am able to do this? They said unto him, Yea Lord. Then touched he their eyes, saying, According to your faith be it unto you. And their eyes were opened…’ (Matt.9:28-30) 

Yes my brethren, our Bit says it all! Our power and blessedness will be defined by the maturity and strength of our faith, for Christianity is a faith-based organization. 

What does Hebrews say about the subject? ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him (God): for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb.11:6) 

And there was nobody who had more faith, or gave us a better example of it, than Jesus, for though He was God in the flesh, He never took credit for anything, but always deferred to the Father. 

Even as a youth, when He strayed from His parents in Jerusalem, when they finally found Him debating with the elders in the temple, His words to them were: ‘How is it that ye sought me? wist (knew) ye not that I must be about my father’s business? And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.’ (Luke 2:49-50) 

And the scholars offer this explanation. ‘2:49. Wist ye not or “Did you not realize?” There is a certain tension between Jesus’ responsibility to parents on the one hand and to His heavenly Father on the other.’ 

Though He was somewhat rude to His earthly parents with that answer, Jesus clearly showed from early on that His heavenly Father’s business was NUMBER ONE! 

And when the Jews tried to tell Him He had a devil (demon spirit), He bluntly answered. ‘I have not a devil (demon spirit): but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me.’ (John 8:49) 

And later on when they asked if he was greater than Abraham and the prophets, His answer was: ‘If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me…’ (John 8:54) Yuh see mih breddren, with Jesus, it was all about the Father. And so should it be with us. 

Hear Him once more: ‘For I have not spoken of myself (my own authority), but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore; even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.’ (John 12:49-50) 

And whom did Jesus turn to in His time of greatest sorrow? The Father! That memorable night in the Garden of Gethsemane, where He fell on His face and prayed: ‘O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.’ (Matt.26:39) 

Even in His most fervent prayer, Jesus still acknowledged that His journey would be led by the Father’s will, not His. 

And finally, here is this episode from Mark which really shows Jesus’ strong, steady and faithful connection to His heavenly Father. ‘And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary (deserted) place, and there prayed.’ (Mark 1:35) 

The scholars then tell us: 1:35. Mark emphasizes that it was a great while before day. Showing that Jesus began each day of His earthly ministry with prayer is only the secondary intention of this verse. The primary aim is to show how Jesus made important decisions: by earnest, persistent prayer. 

Here Jesus stands at the crossroads of decision: His first year of public preaching (vs. 9-20) has borne little visible fruit. But His miracles of healing are drawing huge crowds (vs.31-32) and bringing Him recognition (v.28). 

So the question is whether He should continue to put the stress of His ministry on the preaching of the gospel for the healing of man’s diseased soul, or place the stress of His work on the more popular performing of miracles for the healing of man’s body. To make the proper choice, He seeks by prayer the Father’s wisdom.’  

And He certainly received the right answer: place the stress on healing our sinful souls! All praise and thanks to God for filling Him with that heavenly wisdom! Otherwise our bodies would have been healed, but our souls would still have been bound for Hades. 

Now let’s go home, safe and secure in the knowledge of our Tuesday Mantra, as we declare it loudly, proudly and sincerely. ‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

And if you truly believe it, then let’s go out and do it nuh! Much LOVE!

…if Jesus made it a point to first talk to the Father…then why shouldn’t we lesser mortals do the same eh…

 

 

 

 

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Today’s Scrip-Bit 1 September 2016 Hebrews 11:1.

 Hebrews 11:1.    Now faith is the substance (realization) of things hoped for, the evidence (conviction) of things not seen.

Welcome my Scrip-Bit friends and family to this glorious Thursday morn; the first day of September 2016! Our God is alive and well in His heaven, faithfully looking over His people here on earth. And all God’s people said a loud and grateful, ‘Thank You Lord!’ 

Now the 1st of September in the northern climes usually means that the summer is technically over; the free paper burn, holidays are over, no more weekends at the cottage, it’s back to school and work, and begin thinking about the winter weather that will be upon us in another couple of months. 

But before we get to that (smile), I want to share ‘A Prayer for Solutions,’ from Gramps Schuller’s (Dr. Robert H Schuller) Hour of Power Devotional. 

Please pray with me. ‘Lord, thanks for assuring me that you’ll solve the problems if I’ll exercise the faith and make the right decision! Forgive me for waiting for all the difficulties, real or fanciful, to be resolved before deciding to make my commitment. 

I confess I have too often allowed problems instead of possibilities to take over leadership of my life – to make my decisions – and take command over my destiny. I know, now, what faith is, Lord! It’s making the right decisions before I see solutions to all the problems! Increase my faith! Amen.’ 

And isn’t that the gospel truth my people? It surely is! We allow the problems, rather than the possibilities to run our lives.  Remember, we live; we walk by faith and not by sight. (2 Cor.5:7) So as our faith goes, so go our lives. 

If our faith is strong, then we walk comfortably with the Lord. If our faith is weak and we have many doubts, then our walk of faith is not as strong and we are liable to take more missteps and make more mistakes than we ought to. 

And I sincerely believe that lack of true faith is one of the Christian’s biggest problems nowadays. With the world and all its evil and lustful pleasures and demand for material possessions coming against us so strongly, it’s very easy to falter, to lose faith and sight in God and succumb to the temptation. 

That’s why faith is so crucial in our everyday lives, something we need to keep at the forefront all the time, since it’s so easy to lose faith when the trials and tribulations beset us. And what is faith you ask? 

Well the Good Book gives us this definition, which is also our Bit for today. ‘Now faith is the substance (realization) of things hoped for, the evidence (conviction) of things not seen.’ Yeh friends, technically, it’s about hoping for and believing what we cannot see. 

But here is an excellent explanation on our Bit from the scholars. ’11:1. Verse 1 is not so much a definition of what faith is, as it is a description of what faith does (cf.11:6). Two truths concerning its activity are stated here. First, faith provides substance (Gr. hypostasis). Though broad in its usages, this Greek word normally has the meaning of “assurance” in the New Testament (cf. 3:14, 2 Cor.9:4; 11:17) and this seems to be the best sense here. 

Second, faith provides evidence (Gr. elegchos). It is evidence in the sense of proof that results in conviction. The difference between assurance and evidence would be minimal were it not for the phrase qualifying each: of things hoped for and of things not seen. 

The first involves future hope; the second involves present realities that are unseen. The first includes the hope of the resurrection, the return of Christ, and the glorification of the saints. The second involves unseen realities, such as forgiveness of sin through Christ’s sacrifice and the present intercession of Christ in heaven. Hope is faith relating to the future; conviction is faith relating to the present.’ 

Oh friends, I know that is somewhat convoluted and might prove confusing, but please take your time and reason it out, and it will eventually become clear. Faith is the biggest thing in our Christian walk. It’s what keeps us attached to our awesome God; to the Holy Trinity of Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Only by faith can we believe it all! 

As the Good Book tells us: ‘But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ (Heb.11:6) 

So my brethren, it’s all about hope and belief. Remember, you can’t have faith if you don’t first have hope, for hope is what stirs the pot of faith and keeps it bubbling up strong and positive. 

Now let’s truly acknowledge our hope and faith by enthusiastically declaring our Thursday Blessings, for a blessing is not a blessing until it’s been spoken. 

Altogether now: ‘I declare that I am blessed with God’s supernatural wisdom and receive clear direction for my life! I declare today that I am blessed with creativity, courage, talent and abundance! I am blessed with a strong will, self-control and self-discipline! I am blessed with a great family, good friends, good health, faith, favour and fulfillment! 

I am blessed with success, supernatural strength, promotion and divine protection! I am blessed with a compassionate heart and a positive outlook on life! I declare that any curse or negative word that’s ever been spoken over me is broken right now in the name of Jesus! I declare that everything I put my hands to will prosper and succeed! I declare it today and everyday! Amen!’ 

Wonderful my people! Now let’s go out and put our faith into action nuh, because it’s useless unless and until it is acted upon! Much LOVE!

…faith calls for works…and works demand faith to do them…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 23 August 2016 Proverbs 18:21.

Proverbs 18:21.   Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that LOVE it shall eat the fruit thereof.

Ah mih people, on this ‘loverly’ Tuesday morn, as the summer season of 2016 winds down, it is only right and our bounden duty to give thanks to Almighty God for allowing us to see another blessed day on planet Earth! 

So, as the psalmist did, let’s declare with enthusiasm and sincerity: ‘This is the day which the Lord hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it.’ (Ps.118:24) And that’s for certain sure my faithful, believing brethren! We’d be extremely foolish if we did not celebrate our life and rejoice in these trying times. 

And we’re only able to do that because Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour has already defeated hell, death and the grave and given us heaven and everlasting life to look forward to! 

And all God’s people said a loud and grateful, ‘Praise the Lord!’  

Now let’s bombard heaven with even more prayer; this from Gramps Schuler’s (Dr. Robert H. Schuler) Hour of Power Devotional, titled ‘A Prayer for Solutions.’ Most likely I’ve shared it before, but that’s immaterial, since prayer never gets stale, is always fresh and welcomed in heaven. 

So please pray with me. ‘Lord, thanks for assuring me that you’ll solve the problems if I’ll exercise the faith and make right decisions! Forgive me for waiting for all difficulties, real or fanciful, to be resolved before deciding to make my commitment. 

I confess I have too often allowed problems instead of possibilities to take over leadership of my life – to make my decisions – and take command over my destiny. I know, now, what faith is, Lord! It’s making the right decisions before I see solutions to all the problems! Increase my faith! Amen.’ 

Yes friends, all of us could do with an increase of faith in these last days. And to help us do that, let’s declare our Tuesday Mantra with joy and thanksgiving. 

‘I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world.  Amen!’ 

Oh glory to God my precious people! There’s no better designation than being the beloved of God and the friend of Jesus! Wow! Right there we’ve captured the best of all worlds! However, let’s remember that those wonderful rights, also bear significant responsibilities, like LOVING others, like sharing Jesus’ LOVE with the entire world! 

And unlike the current trend of irresponsibility in our present world, Christians are expected to be totally responsible in all aspects of their lives. So let’s not forget to do as we should, otherwise we’d be failing Jesus, and that’s one thing we surely don’t want to do. 

And to help us do that (smile) let’s invoke the awesome words of our Bit. ‘Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that LOVE it shall eat the fruit thereof.’ 

Oh my brethren, when I consider the awesome power of the little tongue, I’m totally amazed. It can spread LOVE, as well as kill it. It can inflame negative things like hate, anger and resentment, and by the same token douse them like water on fire. How does James put it in his spiel on the tongue? 

‘For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind:  But the tongue can no man tame: it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 

Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude (likeness) of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.’ (James 3:7-10) 

And that’s gospel truth friends! We ought not to praise God and curse people with the same tongue. But unfortunately we do it, and eventually will pay a hefty price for so doing. Now hear some explanations from the scholars. 

‘3:7. The word tamed (Gr. damazo) occurs in only one other New Testament passage (Mark 5:4), about the maniac of Gadara, which helps us to establish the proper meaning of the word in James. The “taming” has nothing to do with domesticating animals or training them to perform. The meaning is control or dominion. Mankind can control every lesser creature, but no one can control his own tongue.’ 

And is that ever so true!  But unfortunately we do it, though to our detriment. 

‘3:9. James explains that man is made in God’s image (cf. Gen.1:26-27; 5:1), so to curse people and yet bless God is inconsistent. Though the fall of mankind has marred that image or likeness, James teaches that it still exists (as do Gen. 9:6 and 1 Cor. 11:7).’ Please read those scriptures, my friends. 

Now let’s end with further words of James on the plight of the tongue. ‘Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.’ (James 3:11-12)  

And the scholars further explain. ‘3:12. The last clause of verse 12 differs from those that precede it: The former are questions that attempt to illustrate; this one is a statement to teach. As salt water cannot make sweet water, so the person who curses others cannot bless God. The cursing of people truly indicates what lies within a person.’ 

Ah mih breddren, I won’t touch that one (smile) except to say let’s take time to day to ponder how we’re doing individually on that particular problem of cursing people and blessing God. And then, ask God for His ever-available help on the situation, for that’s the wisdom of heaven! Much LOVE!

…if God wanted us to be double mouthed…He would have given us two mouths…

 

 

 

 

Today’s Scrip-Bit 14 August 2014 Jeremiah 6:16

Jeremiah 6:16.   Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

Oh Friends, neighbours and fellow believers, it’s just one of those days… I went to bed late, got up early, feeling foggy, with all the ole arthritic bones crying out!

And to make matters worse, a tooth in my lower right jaw has suddenly begun acting up, which might necessitate a trip to the friendly dentist. (smile) Oh, my dentist is truly friendly. I’ve been going to him for over thirty years.

And what’s my response? A great ‘Glory Hallelujah!’

Yes Friends, I’m giving thanks and praise, because if those are my biggest worries, then I’m way ahead of the game! Those are minor problems compared to those so many others are suffering, especially our unjustly persecuted Christian brethren in other parts of the world. Hope you are continually praying for them.

And my problems most likely won’t do me in, so I’m just going to keep on keeping on, in the holy name of our magnificent Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, who has faithfully promised never to leave or forsake me.

Now He never promised that I wouldn’t have problems, in fact He assured us that we would by simply believing in Him, but promised that He would not allow me to bear more than I can handle, and even then to help me go through them and bring me out better on the other side.

Wow! That’s why I can confidently say, like my Bubba Joel, (Joel Osteen): ‘TODAY IS MY DAY!

Yes my brethren, today is our day, so please affirm with me: ‘God has destined me to be a barrier breaker! He created me to be uncontainable. I have talent and potential given to me by the Creator of the universe. There are seeds of greatness inside of me.

Today, I choose to break free from a limited mindset and enlarge my vision. Today, God is taking me places that I’ve never even dreamed of before. Today, God is fulfilling His purpose and destiny in my life. Today, I will experience His favour like never before in every area of my life.’

And all of God’s children gave out a mighty shout of, ‘Praise the Lord!’

And now that we’ve affirmed all that, let’s go out and through sight of faith, make it happen…with God’s help obviously. Because through our great and wonderful God, we’re all conquerors, victors and not victims, the head and not the tail!

So please let’s behave in a suitable manner, one that embodies all those fine characteristics of Jesus; also doing good, caring and sharing, both emotionally and physically, like He wants us to do.

Oh my fellow believers, the best way to speak of Jesus is through the example of our everyday lives! For remember that actions speak much louder than words, and others are liable to come to Jesus much more through our Christ-like actions, than our good news words.

As they say, the gospel in action is a most remarkable tool, and so very hard to ignore. And that’s my little spiel for today! (smile).

Now let’s see what our Bit has to offer. ‘Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.’

Oh Friends, that is such a powerful and meaningful scripture, especially in these rather evil and ungodly times! It was very apropos in Jeremiah’s time, and even more so in ours now. I heard Uncle John (John Hagee) preach on it last night, and though we’ve used it as a Bit before, it’s so relevant to our frightful times, that I was guided to use it again.

Ah mih people, those old ways and paths of our forefathers were so blessed by obedience to God’s Word that prosperity was a given!

My brethren, let’s listen to this most potent passage of scripture, and as we do so, let’s also embed it deep in our hearts, souls, minds and bodies, for it’s the quintessential, the purest and most perfect direction for success and successful living.

‘There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so will I be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance (you shall give as a possession) the land which I sware unto their fathers to give them.

Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper (have success, act wisely) whithersoever thou goest.

This book of the law shall not depart out of (shall constantly be in) thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein in day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.’ (Josh. 1:5-8)

Oh Friends, that says it all! The numerous new-fangled books on prosperity and success are totally unnecessary since we have God’s own direction for successful living.

Those are the old paths and way that we ought to tread and embrace if we want to be truly successful and prosperous! They have been proven over and over by numerous societies, who rose to greatness by following them.

But by the same token, when they have turned away from, forsaken the Lord God Jehovah, like we are currently doing, then their success and prosperity have been sadly trampled in the dust.

Please my fellow believers, I plead with us to learn that significant lesson today, and to put it into practice, for it is the wisdom of Almighty God Himself! And if we foolishly continue to not adhere to His commands, disobey His imperial dictates, then eventually, possibly sooner than later, our society will also crumble into dust and ashes.

Is that what we want to happen? I very much doubt it. Well then, let’s wake up and smell the awful stench of our disobedience nuh! Much LOVE!

…when new ways and new paths lead to death and destruction…the wise turn back to the old ways and paths…those of the living God…which lead to success and prosperity…salvation and eternal life…